Thane: The Maharashtra State Road Transport Corporation department of Thane who had suffered losses during the pandemic had now earned Rs 1.70 crore during Ganesh Chaturthi festival. By sending almost 902 buses for devotees from Thane region to different parts of Konkan region during the festival the ST department had earned Rs 1.70 crores.
The Thane ST department started receiving bookings for ST buses from Thane in August. However, for the convenience of the devotees and travelers the ST had organised around 815 buses from the Thane division. The buses had 902 trips to different parts of Konkan including Raigad, Ratnagiri and Sindhagurd among other small talukas and villages.
“Compared to last year with a complete lockdown, hardly people traveled to Konkan to celebrate the festival. But this year the number of devotees and the booking for buses kept increasing. On normal days the ST bus earns and gets a benefit of Rs 33 per kilometer. But during the festival season and long travel the ST earns a benefit of Rs 57 per kilometer,” said an official from the ST department.
Vinod Bhalerao, Divisional Controller, MSRTC, Thane confirmed about the profit earned by the department and said, “The booking for the ST buses and by group of people started three to four months ago. With the increasing demand for the bus we started coordinating with other depots and arranged buses accordingly,” added Bhalerao further explaining the buses arranged were from Thane 145, Nashik 125, Dhue 101, Raigad 70, Jalgaon 52, Osmanabad 50, Satara 50, Sindhudurg 50.
“Most of the bookings were made from Borivali, Bhayander, Thane, CBD, Mulund, Bhandup, Kalyan, Vithalwadi in-between September 5 to September 9. The buses had a total 902 trips earning an amount of Rs 1.70 crore. The buses totally run 95,335 kilometers in all this trip,” added Bhalerao.
Around 325 staff of the State transport department of Thane got vaccinated against COVID-19 on Saturday. The Thane Municipal Corporation had organised the drive on Saturday. “The corporation had arranged 550 vaccination doses. But due to the national holiday few people came in for the drive and only 325 of the staff got vaccinated. The Thane ST department has around 3250 staff, which includes 485 drivers, 596 carrier, work sop staff 515, administration staff 380 and other 600 making a total of 2576 who are completely vaccinated i.e around 80 per cent,” said an official from the ST department.